Freud and Forbidden Knowledge by Peter L. Rudnytsky, Ellen Handler Spitz

By Peter L. Rudnytsky, Ellen Handler Spitz

The psychoanalyst dares to discover the main intimate recesses of the human soul, to throw open long-barred doorways, and to confront the forbidden wisdom underneath the skin. In Freud and Forbidden wisdom, 9 extraordinary essays use psychoanalysis to discover the subject of forbidden wisdom in canonical works of the Western culture, from the Bible to Hamlet. Psychoanalysis is a self-discipline that seeks to appreciate and alleviate human soreness. Its perform is hence an inherently risky job. The psychoanalyst dares to discover the main intimate recesses of the human soul, to throw open long-barred doorways, and to confront the monsters that could lie in wait. In facilitating the patient's strategy of self- discovery, psychoanalysis matters forbidden wisdom. Following Freud's lead, Rudnytsky and Spit technique artworks as constituting psychoanalytic wisdom. Divining that during literature we discover the deposits of forbidden wisdom, this number of 9 remarkable essays pursues the topic of forbidden wisdom in canonical works of the Western culture, from the Hebrew Bible to Boccaccio's The Decameron to Shakespeare's Hamlet. those papers pointedly deal with the canonical prestige of those works, positing that the canon has to be re-visioned so as to get better the heritage of transgression. Freud and Forbidden wisdom deals a chain of wide-ranging meditations at the tragic dimensions of human event; cumulatively, they invite mirrored image at the importance of forbidden wisdom to Freud.

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Press.  Thought, 2:3­24.  212­39.  67­86.  Imago, 33:329­49.  New York: Norton.  188­211.  New York: Behrman.  Press.  Philadelphia: Fortress Press.  London: Routledge.  Press.  Imago, 10:181­203.  Imago, 12:47­69.  Imago, 12:355­86.  New York: Bloch. Page 26 Two— Promethean Positions Ellen Handler Spitz Nothing that hurts shall come with a new face.  A dedicated classicist, Freud took the arts and literature of the Graeco­Roman tradition as a prime source of knowledge about the human condition.

But in order to know this we need, in turn, to know a great deal more than Freudian interpreters characteristically tell us about ancient attitudes to the unconscious mind and its decipherment.  Thus it will turn out, I think, that the best reading of the tragedy does present material bearing an account of what the unconscious mind contains—but not in the way that the Freudian supposes. Now of course if one believes that Freud's theory is correct, and Page 45 universally so, one will not be much deterred from the Freudian interpretation of Sophocles by the discovery that the Freudian interpretation is culturally anachronistic.

Press.  Press.  And it is crucial to its construction that the collocation of circumstances that strikes Oedipus down is not regarded, by him or by anyone else in the play, as the product of his sexual intentions, whether conscious or unconscious.  But in order to know this we need, in turn, to know a great deal more than Freudian interpreters characteristically tell us about ancient attitudes to the unconscious mind and its decipherment.  Thus it will turn out, I think, that the best reading of the tragedy does present material bearing an account of what the unconscious mind contains—but not in the way that the Freudian supposes.

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